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“Unique 'Out of Africa' experience”
Review of Olduvai Camp

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Olduvai Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 24 October 2013

We stayed at Oldavai camp for 1 night on October9th, 2013.
The location is unique and the area had a wild desolate beauty to it.
The masai staff are friendly and there is an authentic feel to the camp.
We are vegetarian and the food was simple and and tasty.
On arrival we were greeted by the staff and taken to the bar for a welcome drink which is a lovely area to relax. This was much needed after the long bumpy dusty journey to the camp. It was a short walk to our tent. The tents are built on a wooden platform at ground level so you have an area of wooden decking for having a drink and enjoying the view. The tents were simply furnished, clean, comfortable bed and plenty of hot water.
I highly recommend going on the sunset safari walk where you are accompanied by 2 Masai guides to a nearby rock kopje where you can watch the sunset over the desert and watch the Masai herding their goats. It’s very peaceful and good to talk about the history of the camp and the local people.
I would recommend staying at Oldavai camp as it breaks up the long drive between the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti. I am very glad we stayed at Oldavai but I think one night is sufficient. It was a beautiful area and the camp has a real ‘Out of Africa’ feel.
We visited Oldavai museum which was about 15kms away on a dusty bumpy road - this was really interesting (it costs $18 USD pp) and we also went to local masai village where for $50 USD per group you are given a traditional masai dance welcome (you participate) and a tour of their camp. This was good, however we did not appreciate the "hard sell" by the masai elder for us to buy things - we ended up buying 2 things which we did not need and would have been cheaper in Arusha.
We also stayed at Rivertrees, Mawe Ninga, Gibbs Farm and Alex Walker in Nth Serengeti before we went to see gorillas in Rwanda.

Room Tip: Arrive in time for evening sunset tour and if you like history and museums go the Oldavai museum abo...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank DavidCarman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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87 - 93 of 252 reviews

Reviewed 18 October 2013

As we drove to Olduvai from the Serengeti, a long and bumpy road, we didn't know what to expect although most reviews rave about the camp. Located in the middle of nowhere, it was a wonderful surprise to come upon the beautiful setting of Olduvai; it is stunning! All the prior reviews are right on about the special aspects of this camp. I would suggest that you zip up the inner tent that leads to your bathroom to protect from any insect or animal intruders that might get in from the outside perimeter; I did read about that happening so just a cautionary note up front. Otherwise, the tents were quite comfortable and regular showers were appreciated. The dining room is really beautiful and unusual; it's built into the rock formation and maintains the integrity of the entire layout of Olduvai. Our sunset walk with two Masai guides was lovely; the six of us had 2 guides, one who spoke English more fluently than the other, but both shared stories about growing up on the side of the crater and tried to educate us about the Masai way of life. Personally, I have one regret about this experience......I would have liked to stay one more day and explore the Gorge, take a longer walk with the Masai, visit a nearby village, etc. Driving in late in the day and leaving early the next morning wasn't enough time to really appreciate this camp and its environs. I would suggest spending another night at Olduvai and enjoying more of what the area has to offer historically and culturally.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with friends
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3  Thank BKandCB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 October 2013

We stayed at Olduvai for one night only, but it would be a place to enjoy for weeks.

The setting is other worldly. Having been thrown around by the corrugated tracks down from the crater, we neared a crop of rocks in the middle of the (currently) dry and yellow Serengeti. As we drew closer we were able to view a series of tents and buildings blended into the outcrop which was our home for one night. Sitting under the tent porch, in the dark, the only sounds were those of nearby animals, the only light from the stars. Our London lives were completely forgotten.

It is the most magical of situations. The food was great, the service and staff were very friendly. This is the middle of Africa, so we were not expecting a range of food options or sophisticated hotel options. Go there if you want to get away from it, it is unlikely to disappoint.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Mynwy25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 September 2013

My husband and I traveled to Africa with another couple for 10 days on Safari just returning yesterday. We stayed in luxury tented camps that we absolutely loved including Olivers and Sayari Mara but the one that we can't stop talking about is Olduvai run by the Masai. We arrived late afternoon and had time to settle in to our luxury tents prior to joining two Masai on a 30 minute sunset walk. Our guide spoke wonderful english so we were able to ask him a lot about Masai tradition and his view an many things which was fasinating. We then had time to shower before dinner (great shower and modern toilet in each luxury tent) and dinner was delicious. At dinner wine and surprised us with a traditional Masai entertainment (men jumping and chanting) which we had seen before but our friends had not so it was very entertaining. They had beautiful handmade jewelry and other things for sale made themselves so you knew there were no middle men involved. When we finished the delicious breakfast which included omelets, they had all the ingredients for us to custom made a lunch to go. The only thing we felt guilty about was the low price of the camp compared to the others we stayed at but that is likely because it is a bit out of the way but perfect if you are on your way thorough Serengeti. The Masai were so appreciative of our staying with them and they touched our hearts with their kindness. We will never forget this wonderful group of people and wouldn't consider a visit to Africa without a stay at Olduvai.

Room Tip: Plan to visit Olduvai if you are heading across the Serengeti even if it is an hour out of your way...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank JennyPeter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 September 2013

We stopped at Olduvai camp for an overnight stay on our transit between the crater and the central Serengeti. The transition from the lush mountain forests of the outer crater rim to the semi-arid region of Olduvai was breathtaking. Add a lot of dust on the road with few cars, masais herding their cattle and goats, and you really feel a sense of adventure.
We only had time for the sunset walk with a friendly Masai warrior who walks two days to walk back home. The sunset on the kopje is epic and almost rivals the one we experienced later in the trip in the Mara Serengeti facing a running herd of wildebeests.
Hot water was plentiful, food was simple but adequately prepared with friendly service. Beds are comfortable (foam latex) with mosquito netting, but there was so much wind on the plains that I had a hard time falling asleep until the wind died down around midnight. I took the opportunity to take night photographs of the stars and the Milky Way. My wife and kids bought locally made Masai jewelry, chief staff, and a tse tse flychaser made out of a cow's tail.
My only regret is that we did not have enough time to explore the shifting black sand dunes or hike into the gorge to visit the Masai wells because we had to reach the gates of the Ngorongoro conservation area to avoid incurring another day's fees for the park. As a solace, we got to spend additional time in the central Serengeti between the Simba and Masai kopjes where we saw the aftermath of a kill by a lioness and her four cubs, a leopard's tail in the distance, elephants, warthogs, gazelles, hardebeests and giraffes. In Olduvai itself, wildlife is scarce at this time of the year except for resident giraffes and rock hyraxes.
Overall, I would highly recommend staying here but give yourselves extra time if possible to do the activities we missed

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank Henry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 August 2013

My husband and I stayed just one night at Olduvai Camp, but it was wonderful. When planning our trip, we considered staying elsewhere as Olduvai is very dry in August. However, we're so glad we chose to include it. Just driving through that desolate land and imagining it as the home of early hominids was incredible. The camp itself is very well designed. The simple, but lovely, tents all have expansive views and the dining area and bar are just what you would think a safari camp should look like. The food was fine and service warm. However, the highlight was the sunset walk to the boulders with a personal Maasi guide. The conversations with the guide were illuminating and memorable. We appreciated the opportunity to talk to Maasi about their changing lifestyle without treating them like curiosities in a human zoo.

Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
1  Thank ash5704
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 August 2013

We stayed at Olduvai for just one night and even though it was a short stay it was a wonderful, peaceful and tranquil place to stay. It is literally in the middle of nowhere. The walk with the Maasi warrior to see the sunset was a memorable experience along with climbing to the top of the rocks to watch the sun rise.
The tents are beautiful and very comfortable and the food delicious.
Looking out from our tent we could see giraffes walking by in the distance. I would love to come back again in April when there are more game present.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Smith2013xxx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Olduvai Camp

Address: Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Region: Tanzania > Serengeti National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #30 of 122 Speciality Lodging in Serengeti National Park
Price Range: £272 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Olduvai Camp has only 17 tents, built around a big kopje. His location in the heart of the NCA is ideal for treks, especially along the Olduvai gorges. Every tent has a good comfort: big beds (doubles or twins) with quality bedding, pillows, covers etc...Necessary furniture, terrace with safari chairs, bathroom inside the structure (WC, hot shower with running water, small sink). The camp is eco-friendly, using solar panels (for lights, water heating etc.), Recycling garbage, water saving etc. Olduvai Camp is a must not to be missed if you like to experience an unforgettable overnight in the bush, between the famous Ngorongoro crater and the endless plains of Serengeti. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Olduvai Camp Hotel Serengeti National Park

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